Beauty On A Budget

Hi dolls! Social media tends to make us think that we cannot achieve the same looks using cheap & drugstore items that most influencers get with luxury products. That’s where they’re wrong: You can get the same – if not better – looks with these alternatives.

First, we’re going to
talk foundations, concealers,
and primers. A lot of the time, luxury vs. drugstore base products tend to lean in favor of drugstore items because luxury doesn’t always live up to the name & price. Over the years, I have found several incredible dupes that are a fraction of the price of their luxury counterpart.

*wearing Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless and Rimmel London Match Perfection Concealer*


Dupe for MAC Studio Fix Fluid: Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Foundation – $5.99
Good for all skin types, comes in 23 shades, oil-free, refines pores, leaves a natural soft matte finish

Dupe for Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick: Maybelline Fit Me Shine-Free + Balance Foundation Stick- $6.49
Great for combination to oily skin, absorbs excess oils, reduces shine, minimizes appearance of pores, leaves a natural matte finish, great for on-the-go

Dupe for Nars Soft Matte Foundation: L’Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte – $10.97
Great for oily skin, light texture, leaves a demi-matte finish, comes in 12 shades, does well covering imperfections.

Dupe for Kat Von D Lock-It Tattoo Foundation: Nyx Invincible Fullest Coverage Foundation – $11.99
Great for all skin types, very full coverage, comes in 20 shades, leaves a natural soft matte finish

Dupe Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation: L’Oréal True Match Lumi Foundation – $12.99
Great for dry to combination skin, 40% water for all day hydration, packed with antioxidants vitamin C and E, leaves a natural luminous glowy finish, comes in 15 shades, broad spectrum SPF 20

Dupe for Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup: Revlon Colorstay Foundation – $12.99
Great for normal to oily skin, broad spectrum SPF 15, comes in 22 shades, oil-free, controls excess oils, leaves a natural finish


Dupe for Makeup Forever Base Corrector: Nyx Color Correction Liquid Primer – $13.99

Good for all skin types, corrects redness.

Dupe for Urban Decay Eyeshadow Prime Potion: Nyx HD Eyeshadow Base – $6.99

Evens out skin tone, smooths out lines, preps for true color and long lasting shadow.

Dupe for Benefit The Porefessional Primer: Maybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser – $6.99

Refines pores leaving a beautiful poreless finish.

Dupe for Smashbox Photo Finish Primer: L’Oréal Infallible Mattifying Base – $14.99

Transforms skin texture leaving a matte finish & velvet-soft touch.

Dupe for Makeup Forever Step 1 Mattifying Base: Bouriois Happy Light Matte Serum Primer – $14.07

Leaves a beautiful light, natural, soft-matte finish
Good for all skin types

Now, the concealers don’t have any exact dupes BUT they are incredible for the price and I highly recommend.

L.A. Girl Pro Conceal – $3.99
Great for all skin types, comes in 21 shades, also comes in 7 correcting shades, leaves a beautiful natural skin-like finish.

Rimmel London Match Perfection Skin Tone Adapting 2 in 1 Concealer & Highlighter – $4.97

Covers imperfections, soft applicator perfect for the under eye area, blends beautifully, buildable coverage, good for all skin types.

Wet N’ Wild Illumi-Naughty Highlighting & Concealing Pen – $4.99
Great for all skin types, conceals and illuminates your best features, formulate with vitamin c and chamomile to moisturize and condition – perfect for the under eye area!

Maybelline Fit Me Concealer – $6.99

Natural coverage that leaves skin fresh, breathing and natural, allows skin’s natural highs and lows to show through, non-comedogenic

Rimmel London Wake Me Up Concealer – $9.43

Anti-fatigue effect, gives the skin a radiant glow, medium to light coverage, awakens & illuminates the eyes, formulated with peptides & vitamin moisturizing complex.

Maybelline Instant Age-Rewind Eraser Concealer – $6.99
Good for dark circles, leaves the under eye area radiant and refreshed, dimishes appearance of puffiness.

Neutrogena 3-in-1 Concealer – $8.39
Broad spectrum SPF 20, super blendable, corrects dark circles and puffiness with a botanical treatment with aloe & green tea, gentle enough for sensitive eyes & contact lens wearers.

E.L.F Concealer/Highlighter Duo – $3.00
Contains vitamins A & E, chamomile, caffeine, and green tea to moisturize and correct problematic under eye areas.

I have used most if not
All of the powders I am going
to be mentioning, and they have all become staples in my makeup collections.

Coty Airspun Loose Face Powder – $7.99
Ultra-soft, hides fine lines, wrinkles and blemishes, gives a new softness to your skin – incredible to set your foundation with!

Rimmel London Stay Matte Pressed Powder – $5.99
Up to 5 hour natural shine control, minimizes the appearance of pores, leaves a beautiful natural soft matte finish.

Maybelline Superstay Better Skin Skin-Transforming Powder – $10.99

Non-comedogenic, contains salicylic acid, wears all day, reduces the appearance of imperfections, pores and evens out your skin tone.


Milani Baked Blush – $5.99
Multi-purpose, shapes, contours, and highlights the face, brings life & color to the cheeks.

Wet N’ Wild Color Icon Blush – $2.93

Perfect balance between a blendable transparent sheen and a radiant pop of color, lightweight, long-lasting


E.L.F Baked Highlighter – $4.00

Comparable to MAC highlighters, buttery consistency, inexpensive, leaves a natural & soft glow-from-within

Wet N’ Wild Geometric Highlighting Powder – $3.99
A bit stiff but can be built up, leaves a beautiful natural sheen

Wet N’ Wild Megaglo Illuminating Powder – $4.68
4 shades that can be worn alone or mixed together, provides skin with an iridescent shimmer, easily blendable

Wet N’ Wild Megaglo Highlighting Powder – $4.99

Milani Baked Bronzer – $9.99
A streak-free glow with a slight shimmer finish, blend well for a soft glow.

Physicians Formula Happy Booster Bronzer – $13.49
Versatile baked formula can be used wet for a dramatic glow or dry for a natural sunkissed glow,
high-performance bi-colored bronzer, gives the perfect sunkissed and happy glow.
High-impact pearlescent gold heart features extra shimmer for a boost of glamour.

Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer – $15.99
Ultra-rich formula, instantly melts into skin, sealing-in moisture to deliver instant and lasting hydration,
incredibly creamy and soft texture combines the best features of a powder and cream bronzer, delivers a lit-from-within tropical glow, packed with essential fatty acids and pro-vitamins that soften, condition and moisturize skin.

Wet N’ Wild Coloricon Bronzer –
The grand daddy of the bronzer world, dermatologist-tested, oil-free, protects you from harmful UVB rays. Complements your features.

E.L.F. Contour Palette – $6.00
Comparable to Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit, designed to contour, shade, sculpt, brighten, and highlight the face.
Smooth texture, infused with vitamin e


Morphe Palettes – averaging
Absolutely worth the price, contains 35 eyeshadows, butter & creamy, stunning pigment, not drugstore but on the cheaper side.

Colourpop Super Shock Shadows – $5.00

Buttery-soft texture, great to use with your fingers, super blendable, excellent pigment, not drugstore but very inexpensive.

L’Oreal Infallible Eyeshadow – $8.99

Wet N’ Wild Coloricon Eyeshadow Collections – $4.99

Coastal Scents Revealed Palettes – $10.00


Maybelline Master Precise Eyeliner – $9.99

L’Oreal Infallible Gel Laquer Eyeliner – $9.99

Nyx Noir Liquid Black Liner – $5.99

Covergirl Bombshell Intense Eyeliner – $5.00


Covergirl Lashblast Mascara – $12.00

Rimmel London ScandalEyes Retro Glam Mascara – $5.00

Maybelline Falsies Mascara – $5.00

L’Oréal Voluminous Superstar Mascara – $9.00

Covergirl Super Sizer Mascara – $6.00

*wearing Jordana FabuBrow Eyebrow Pencil in Dark Brown*


Jordana FabuBrow Eyebrow Pencil – $3.00

Milani Brow Fix Brow Kit – $6.29

Nyx MicroBrow – $10.00

L’Oréal Brow Stylist – $8.99

Elf Instant Lift Eyebrow Pencil – $2.00

Personally, I use mostly drugstore products daily. If they are luxury, they are most likely sample or travel size products that I’ve purchased or received in a monthly subscription(i.e. Ipsy, BirchBox). A good tip when it comes to luxury products is ask for them for holidays, birthdays, or graduations. This way not only will you be saving money but receiving the product will be much more worth it & give it meaning. Another tip if you want to save up money to either purchase luxury products or build an affordable makeup collection is to do the $5 a day ‘challenge’. Every time you have a 5 dollar bill you place it in a jar or container and continue to do so until the container is full. Something else I recommend is looking for deals & coupons at drugstores such as Rite Aid, Walgreens, & CVS. Quite often drugstore will have really good sales like BOGO Free/50% Off (this is a common one) so it’s best to keep an eye out.

Grace Michelle

Christina Koop

Author: Christina Koop

Christina is a fun loving, trend oriented millennial with an eye for trend spotting and digital marketing. In her spare time, she is usually found with friends, reading the next marketing tech book, or simply with her husband relaxing and enjoying all that life has to offer her in NC.